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Discussion Starter #1
I haven't seen anything there about Taste of the Wild. One of my dogs has had issues with all kinds of different food, we decided to try Taste of the Wild and it's been great for him. It seems to make his coat shinier, but it's also greasy now.

Our other dogs eat Nutro Chicken Rice and Oatmeal and thriving on it, I might make the switch to TOTW for all of them but the cost is still an issue right now.

We live in a rural area where premium brands of dog food are difficult to get, so this is about the best grain free food we've been able to find. On other forums I've seen negative comments about it, so I wondered what the overall opinion of it is here.
 

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Taste of the Wild does not guarantee that their fish is ethoxyquin free which is a cancer causing agent which is why many people do not support it. I would choose another company that does guarantee this if it were me.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Taste of the Wild does not guarantee that their fish is ethoxyquin free which is a cancer causing agent which is why many people do not support it. I would choose another company that does guarantee this if it were me.
What companies guarantee it?

It's difficult to guarantee that dogs won't get cancer from something. Would feeding one food over another prevent a dog from ever getting cancer? Are there any companies that guarantee that none of their ingredients have something in it that might someday cause cancer?
 

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Well why would you purposely feed your dog something with a preservative known to cause cancer? I mean it's no different than BHT or BHA, it is a pesticide or was used as one at some point now it's use to preserve dog food and is a known carcinogen so why would you take that kind of attitude especially when you can purchase from companies who do tests on their food to make sure that their suppliers don't use it and guarantee that they don't use it as well? And yes I can guarantee that my dog is not going to get cancer from chicken or beef or fish not preserved with Ethoxyquin, or white rice, or minerals, they get it through either their genetics or using carcinogens and poisons.

Companies that I know of that do not use it (you can also e-mail companies if you are not sure, also this info could have changed in the past 6 months since I contact companies)

Wellness
Flint River Ranch
Solid Gold
Innova
Innova Evo
California Natural
(any of the Natura products which includes the above 3 popular ones)
Canidae (although since changing their formula I do not know if this holds true anymore)
Eagle Pack

Ethoxyquin is used to preserve fish so a food that does not have fish you do not have to be concerned about.

You can also e-mail companies just be careful how you word it as they themselvse may not use it however their supplier might before it gets to the dog food company and in that case they do not have to list it on the ingredients because they did not add it. So you may want to say something like "is Ethoxyquin used to preserve the fish in your product either through your supplier or your company" or something along those lines.

Good luck!
 

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cost issues

I just wanted to respond to cost being an issue for switching to one of the better foods. I go through 40lbs. every 7-10 days and every time I'm buying food I justify it by the fact that we aren't visiting the vet and they are extremely healthy and have fur that feels like bunny fur.

I have a friend with an 8 yr old lab that has been fed Nuto it's entire life because the breeder recommended it. Over the last year, I don't even know how many times and how much money they have spent at the vet for tests. She has an unexplained illness. Her blood count is way off. I've tried to tell them to try switching to one of the good foods and I bet the "unexplained illness" goes away.

The better foods are really that much more expensive. SD and Nutro I feel are VERY expensive compared to what you get for your money.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I just wanted to respond to cost being an issue for switching to one of the better foods. I go through 40lbs. every 7-10 days and every time I'm buying food I justify it by the fact that we aren't visiting the vet and they are extremely healthy and have fur that feels like bunny fur.

I have a friend with an 8 yr old lab that has been fed Nuto it's entire life because the breeder recommended it. Over the last year, I don't even know how many times and how much money they have spent at the vet for tests. She has an unexplained illness. Her blood count is way off. I've tried to tell them to try switching to one of the good foods and I bet the "unexplained illness" goes away.

The better foods are really that much more expensive. SD and Nutro I feel are VERY expensive compared to what you get for your money.

I feed most of my dogs Nutro and they have never been to the vet in 5 years except for occasional check ups and one dog fight. They're all healthy, have good coats, normal stools, etc.

One dog has has had stomach issues, and we've tried almost everything the store sells. Taste of the Wild has been the best so far, he's not as gassy, he gained his weight back.
The only other thing he's been able to eat without it running through him is boiled chicken or ground beef with rice.

I know dogs who lived on Purina and never went to the vet, my sister had a dog for 17 years that only ate Purina and was perfectly healthy.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Well why would you purposely feed your dog something with a preservative known to cause cancer? I mean it's no different than BHT or BHA, it is a pesticide or was used as one at some point now it's use to preserve dog food and is a known carcinogen so why would you take that kind of attitude especially when you can purchase from companies who do tests on their food to make sure that their suppliers don't use it and guarantee that they don't use it as well? And yes I can guarantee that my dog is not going to get cancer from chicken or beef or fish not preserved with Ethoxyquin, or white rice, or minerals, they get it through either their genetics or using carcinogens and poisons.

Companies that I know of that do not use it (you can also e-mail companies if you are not sure, also this info could have changed in the past 6 months since I contact companies)

Wellness
Flint River Ranch
Solid Gold
Innova
Innova Evo
California Natural
(any of the Natura products which includes the above 3 popular ones)
Canidae (although since changing their formula I do not know if this holds true anymore)
Eagle Pack

Ethoxyquin is used to preserve fish so a food that does not have fish you do not have to be concerned about.

You can also e-mail companies just be careful how you word it as they themselvse may not use it however their supplier might before it gets to the dog food company and in that case they do not have to list it on the ingredients because they did not add it. So you may want to say something like "is Ethoxyquin used to preserve the fish in your product either through your supplier or your company" or something along those lines.

Good luck!
Is Ethoxyquin in their fish for sure? How do you know if it is or not? They don't guarantee that it's not in there, but that doesn't mean for sure that it is.

I tried Innova already, it ran through him like it was water and he lost weight on it. The other brands aren't sold around here.

I suppose I'll just have to take my chances with what he eats, the odds him getting cancer are probably just as high if he eats any brand of food. But if he can't keep the food in his system long enough to get any nutrients from it, then fish preservatives are the least of his worries.
 

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Is Ethoxyquin in their fish for sure? How do you know if it is or not? They don't guarantee that it's not in there, but that doesn't mean for sure that it is.

I tried Innova already, it ran through him like it was water and he lost weight on it. The other brands aren't sold around here.

I suppose I'll just have to take my chances with what he eats, the odds him getting cancer are probably just as high if he eats any brand of food. But if he can't keep the food in his system long enough to get any nutrients from it, then fish preservatives are the least of his worries.

You can order the others online at okay prices. Most places that are not guaranteeing that they don't use it so simply because it's a cheap preservative so yes I would say that if they do not guarantee it that there's probably a 99% chance that it IS in there. If you're not interested in using decent foods, and educating yourself on the dangers of certain foods, I'm not completely sure why you are here. No, the odds of him getting cancer ARE higher with being fed poison I assure you. You may as well take a little bit of rat poison and add it to chicken and rice and you could say the same thing, there really isn't a whole lot of difference IMO. If he has trouble keeping food down then you may want to homecook for him if you can afford it. Chicken and rice is good, beef and rice, etc. Or there's someone else on here that knows about raw if that is an option as well. I have a dog with colitis trust me, I know about going through foods and them going through him, he ended up at the vet with blood in his stool and uncontrollable diarrhea so I am very well aware of the issues. It took some trial and error but I have found that adding ProZyme (a digestive enzyme) and a probiotic to his food did the trick. there are still some foods that he cannot eat, but there are also a few that he can and that he does okay with now. There are other alternatives to knowingly feeding your dog poison, you just have to find something else that works for him, I promise there IS something out there.
 

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Discussion Starter #9 (Edited)
You can order the others online at okay prices. Most places that are not guaranteeing that they don't use it so simply because it's a cheap preservative so yes I would say that if they do not guarantee it that there's probably a 99% chance that it IS in there. If you're not interested in using decent foods, and educating yourself on the dangers of certain foods, I'm not completely sure why you are here. No, the odds of him getting cancer ARE higher with being fed poison I assure you. You may as well take a little bit of rat poison and add it to chicken and rice and you could say the same thing, there really isn't a whole lot of difference IMO. If he has trouble keeping food down then you may want to homecook for him if you can afford it. Chicken and rice is good, beef and rice, etc. Or there's someone else on here that knows about raw if that is an option as well. I have a dog with colitis trust me, I know about going through foods and them going through him, he ended up at the vet with blood in his stool and uncontrollable diarrhea so I am very well aware of the issues. It took some trial and error but I have found that adding ProZyme (a digestive enzyme) and a probiotic to his food did the trick. there are still some foods that he cannot eat, but there are also a few that he can and that he does okay with now. There are other alternatives to knowingly feeding your dog poison, you just have to find something else that works for him, I promise there IS something out there.
I checked into ordering foor from Pet Food direct but the cost of shipping was quite high. I've written to Tractor Supply Company and to the higher ups at the other feed store where we buy food from and asked if they could order some other brands but didn't get far. The biggest problem here is that living in a rural area where most people are low income, the majority of people shop for pet food at Walmart. The biggest seller at the feed store is Dad's dog food.


I'm assuming by your nickname that you have Boxers? The dog we have with digestive problems is half Pit Bull half Boxer. Who knows what kind of food he was fed before we got him, the previous owners weren't very nice. The people who owned the parents bred the dogs on purpose and were jerks too. I'll put the story about how we got him in the "rescue" section.

We haven't tried the ProZyme, might see if that helps. I've fed him home cooked food for a while, boiled chicken or ground beef, mixed it with rice, had to feed him a couple times a day then gradually gave dog food a little at a time to see what he could tolerate. We've also added plain yogurt to his food.
He spent some time in the vet clinic with a stomach full of fluid, still don't know what that was from. First thought it was bloat, but it wasn't. He's had horrid gas, so bad I kept matches and candles in every room, as well as deodorizer spray, the smell was so nasty. He'd burp up a rotten smell all the time. Then the diarrhea that would start out of nowhere, every time that started I went back to feeding him boiled chicken and rice and yogurt again.

So it's been a non stop food thing with him, watching what he eats, making sure he isn't getting into something bad. The Taste of the Wild is the only commercial dog food that's actually worked well for him so that's why I'm hesitant to switch again.
 

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Trust me, I understand, my girl had horrible gas and I tried TOTW and it went away but I returned it when I found out what it was preserved with.

Yes, I have 2 Boxers, one with a gas issue who is 6 1/2 years old, one with colitis who will be 1 year in a week and was diagnosed at 7 months old. I had another Boxer that we lost to cancer last year, and I foster for a Boxer rescue. Trust me, with Boxers being referred to in the vet world as "walking cancer sticks" you definitely do NOT want to increase the chances they are high enough in their genetics. Most Boxers do not die of old age but of DM or cancer. And after going through cancer with my dog for 9 months, I guarantee you, it is not a fun ride and it will change you forever.

My colitis boy and my gas girl have done GREAT on California Natural's Herring and Sweet Potato. Be careful with adding yogurt, my boy is apparently intolerant of it and that will cause major diarrhea and gas with him. I would really recommend a probiotic (I get 250 capsules for $3 at www.puritansale.com and just open a capsule over each of his meals...2 times a day), and I get my ProZyme off www.amazon.com for around $20 (shipping included) and with 2 dogs that usually lasts me 4-5 months (you only put 1/4 of a tsp per 1 cup of dog food so it lasts awhile). If he does not get both we're back to the squirts. Now Blue Buffalo gives him the runs and the new Canidae made his stools pretty soft, but I have had good luck with California Natural for them both (but only the Herring and Sweet Potato as the other 2 are too low in fiber). You can also try adding psyllium to his meals to help bind things. I get that through puritansale also for cheap. And apple cider vinegar (with "the mother" still in it not the kind you buy at the grocery store but the kind you get at a health food store, also can order it on that same site) which is also cheap can help with gas and diarrhea. Also make sure that if you change foods that you make it a good 5-7 day change over SLLOOOWWWLLYY so his system can adjust.

So personally, for my dog he's on California Natural Herring and Sweet Potato with 1 1/2 tsp of apple cider vinegar added to it, 1 capsule of a probiotic, and some ProZyme with each of his meals which is twice a day and he has perfect stools, zero gas, and my girl gets the same with some psyllium added and her gas is completely gone as well.

Good luck.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
I've heard that Boxers have digestive problems more than a lot of other breeds. I found a website once that listed the genetic disorders of all the different breeds, and Boxers were up there on the list with all kinds of health problems that other dogs aren't as prone too. Being half Pit Bull doesn't help much with genetics either, who knows what's in his background. Both of his parents are purebreds, but from backyard breeders I'm sure.

When we switched foods we did it very slowly, first just giving him a handful of kibble to munch on, then adding a little more every day. Even something as small as a dog biscuit could set him back. In the recipe section I asked about home made treats, I can't give him commercially made dog treats at all.

Then to top it all off he likes to eat garbage, cat food, and I have to keep the litter pan gated off he LOVES to eat poop. He got into the cat food once and ate at at least a pound of it, he was so sick for a week from that. All my trash cans in the house have to be covered, he has a thing for kleenex and will eat every one he finds. We really go out of our way to make sure he isn't eating something other than what we give him.

Nobody sells California Natural around here, I just checked on Pet Food Direct to see how much it would cost...

California Natural Herring & Sweet Potato Dry Dog Food (36-lb bag)
Item Total: $44.49
Your 5% Discount: $2.22
Order Subtotal: $42.27
Shipping (40 lbs): $14.09
Total:
$56.36


I wish there was a way to get the feed store to order some other brands, but they can't order one bag at a time, and if nobody else wants it, they won't order it.
 

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I've heard that Boxers have digestive problems more than a lot of other breeds. I found a website once that listed the genetic disorders of all the different breeds, and Boxers were up there on the list with all kinds of health problems that other dogs aren't as prone too. Being half Pit Bull doesn't help much with genetics either, who knows what's in his background. Both of his parents are purebreds, but from backyard breeders I'm sure.

When we switched foods we did it very slowly, first just giving him a handful of kibble to munch on, then adding a little more every day. Even something as small as a dog biscuit could set him back. In the recipe section I asked about home made treats, I can't give him commercially made dog treats at all.

Then to top it all off he likes to eat garbage, cat food, and I have to keep the litter pan gated off he LOVES to eat poop. He got into the cat food once and ate at at least a pound of it, he was so sick for a week from that. All my trash cans in the house have to be covered, he has a thing for kleenex and will eat every one he finds. We really go out of our way to make sure he isn't eating something other than what we give him.

Nobody sells California Natural around here, I just checked on Pet Food Direct to see how much it would cost...

California Natural Herring & Sweet Potato Dry Dog Food (36-lb bag)
Item Total: $44.49
Your 5% Discount: $2.22
Order Subtotal: $42.27
Shipping (40 lbs): $14.09
Total:
$56.36


I wish there was a way to get the feed store to order some other brands, but they can't order one bag at a time, and if nobody else wants it, they won't order it.
$56 isn't bad. With a 65 pound dog and a 70 pound growing puppy that 36 pound bag lasts me between 4 and 5 weeks depending on is my puppy goes through a growth spurt or not. If it works, it may be worth it.

And yes Boxers are prone to many many health issues. I've yet to hear of a Boxer dying of old age, it's always a medical problem unfortunately. Yes, mine gets into cat food once in awhile too, I keep it in my bathroom upstairs and he isn't allowed up there without someone. I have a Booda Dome cat box so he isn't able to get into that, my trash can is in my laundry room so it's behind a closed door. Don't get me wrong, Boxers and pitts both can be destructive but with him eating trash and getting into stuff that tells me he is BORED to tears. Boxers are a working breed and need a TON of exercise. I take my puppy outside 3-4 times a day for 30 minutes off leash to play, I throw a ball typically, and then at night I take him out with a laser pointer and run him around my back yard (1,500 sq ft) 20-30 times which is a good 20-30 minutes or so and times that it rains or is just too hot I definitely notice the difference, he is more defiant, doesn't listen, gets into things, etc. I would say your dog needs quite a bit more exercise. Also a Kong toy will help mentally as well. Dog treat wise I either make my own or I make my own chicken and beef jerky for them also, once in awhile i buy chicen jerky at Costco but it's just dried chicken breast and nothing else added to it.
 

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Discussion Starter #13 (Edited)
He got into the garbage when we weren't home. When we're home he's ok, a neurotic velcro dog who has a bit of separation anxiety so when we leave he doesn't like it. I have six dogs, so even with other dogs to keep him company, he still can't stand it when we leave. We can't even go to the bathroom without him being there, he sits with his face against the bathroom door. When we leave the house we make sure the garbage is away from him, we have a gate so he can't get into the kitchen. He'll eat the bathroom garbage too, but I bought trash cans with lids he can't get into them. I keep my cat food and litter pan in the laundry room with a gate across it so the dogs can't get in there. Six huge dogs and not one of them will jump the gate!

As far as exercise, he gets plenty. Usually he's a couch potato, but when he's outside he's obsessed with rolling rocks around the yard. He finds a huge rock and rolls it everywhere, he would do this for hours if we let him. He picks up the rocks and carries them around, brings them into the garage. We have pile of the rocks he collects and brings in. He also has a bowling ball which he rolls around the yard. The rock rolling is funny to watch, he pushes the rocks with his nose, then his front paws. Our backyard is around an acre, so he has a lot of room to run and do this.

He also has a bin full of his own toys, ropes, kongs, bones, etc. He gets them out and plays with them and entertains himself. Whoever had him before taught him to jump high and grab ropes.

We tried the laser light, but he doesn't really bother with it. He has cataracts and limited vision in one eye, so maybe he can't see the laser.

I don't expect him to live a really long life, he had a rough start, neglected and probably abused before we got him, so we're just doing the best we can to give him a good life for however long he can last.
 

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By himself entertainment (if you want to call rolling rocks entertainment) is different than walks and structured playtime/exercise. He is mentally bored. Walks provide mental stimulation as does training. Also do YOU go out and play with him?? Him rolling rocks sounds like he's bored honestly. My dogs play in the house alone at times, but I also go out there with them and play. Throw a ball and have them bring it back, take them on walks so they can see the world, hide objects and have them find them, STUFF kongs with food so they have to work to get the food out. Again you want to provide physical exercise but also mental stimulation and rolling a rock around the yard isn't mental stimulation. Dogs are like kids you need to interact with them otherwise they become bored.

Have you thought about crate training him while you are gone? Many of the issues you have can be trained out through exercise, mental stimulation, as well as formal training (either training them yourself or via the help of a professional), but you have gone to WAY too much trouble to "dog proof" your home. My trashcan is in my laundry room only because that's the only place it fits, there is no lid, my dog goes in there sometimes if I leave the door open and he sometimes sniffs but he does not bother because he knows better. The cat food I started training him to stay out of it. I still do not let him near it without human supervision just because he gets the runs if he eats it and I don't quite trust him 100% yet by it without a correction but he hasn't bothered it at all in a couple of months, same with our cat box, I do have a booda dome, partially to keep the dogs out of it (mainly my dog that passed away), but for the smell and litter mess as well, and we have created a barrier tha he is not allowed past the threshold of the bathroom doorway where it is (same with the cat food).

TRAINING TRAINING TRAINING lots of mental stimulation and structured exercise, whether it be off leash with you playing WITH him or on leash taking him for walks, but putting him in the backyard and letting him entertain himself with rocks is kind of sad. It's like putting a human child in the backyard all by themselves and saying "here's a soccer ball go play"...all by themselves. Kids want to interact with you, play WITH you, have fun WITH you, dogs aren't much different. I kick a ball around the yard WITH my dog, if I get tired and he's still raring to go I'll switch to throwing it and he brings it back, we do leashed walks, we do training, all of this daily. Does it take an extra 2 hours or so of my day? Yep, but my dog (who is still a puppy mind you) doesn't destroy anything, doesn't get into trash, doesn't chew on things he shouldn't, doesn't have separation anxiety (this is a human created behavior it is not a normal natural dog behavior BTW), doesn't have fear, aggresstion, or any other behavioral problems. He is by no means a perfect dog, but I DO notice he starts doing things he shouldn't on days when it rains and he can't have as much interaction playtime, those days I stuff Kongs, or hide things around the house for him to search for, things that work his mind.

I truly think a lot of your issues can be solved with more interactive and structured exercise and some serious training.

And you never know, dogs that have had "hard lives" can very possibly live long lives. That's no reason to not try to make his time with you happy and fullfilling as a dog being a dog.

Good luck!
 

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Discussion Starter #15
We're always outside when the dogs are out, we never leave them out there alone. When we come in, they come in. We're out there for long periods of time. And yes, we play with the dogs too, throwing balls etc. He goes for walks too. But he still likes to play with the rocks and bowling ball. He's never in the yard alone, ever, like I said, he's a velcro dog, there's no way he'd stay out there alone. So no, it's not like leaving him alone in the yard to entertain himself. The toys he entertains himself with are inside too.

I've stuffed the kongs with food, one of my dogs can rip apart any kong, even the black super strong kongs, in less than a half hour. We also give the dogs large marrow bones, they love them and they last a long time.

We've put him in a crate before, he loves being in the crate and will go in there just to nap. He doesn't destroy anything in the house, doesn't chew furniture or anything like that. But he likes whatever smells yummy in the garbage, so we just keep him out of it.
When we leave he sits by the window or door and waits, I know because we put a camera up just to see what the dogs do when we go somewhere. Usually they lay around and do nothing.

I don't think we went out of our way to dog proof the house, just the normal stuff. I have a gate to keep them out of the kitchen for a few reasons, not just to stay out of the garbage. I have a gate for the laundry room so I can leave the cat pans and cat food in there. ALL of the dogs will eat the cat food if we leave it out, so it's just easier to give the cats their own space that the dogs can't get into.
 
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